Design · fashion · Uncategorized

Design Principles—the art of branding your own fashion line, part 1.

You may or may not know that for the last 20 years, I have worked as a Graphic Designer, Illustrator, and Art Director, designing brands and collateral for large and small corporations, artists, non-profits, and educational institutions. Last spring, I decided I needed a change and decided to split my time between freelance work and going back to school for a certificate in fashion design. I’m not really sure how it will all play out, but am hoping I can, in the end, find something that allows me to combine my love of fashion, graphic design, and illustration.

So, when it came time to design my own fashion brand as an exercise in my Design Principles class at Apparel Arts, I was not-so-secretly thrilled.

I started the way I usually do, by listing important keywords, developing a philosophy and a mission, creating a brand statement, determining attributes, and figuring where my brand fit in as an archetype. I found a “muse” and decided what I loved about her. I played with color, line, shape, and typography. I narrowed down the types of imagery that spoke to me. I found swatches… so many swatches! And my favorite part? I made a honest-to-goodness mood board. It took me much longer to pare down my own brand than it would normally take me for my clients. No one knows you better than you know yourself, but the flip side of that is that you will ALWAYS be your own worst client.

Luckily, I was able to reign myself in. A year later (how has it been a year already?) it still hangs on my wall, and I still smile every time I look at it. How much of this will come into play when I get around to creating my final fashion line? I am not yet sure. I think the luxe tones and textures will, and perhaps the feeling of sitting in a sun-warmed leather chair in the corner of an old library,  book in hand, hound at my feet, and cup of tea within reach. We’ll have to wait and see. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy this mood board as much as I do.

Weathered wood, cork, tweed, velvet, leather, antique lace, fresh flowers, tea , fine art, gold leafing, first-edition books, and Canis familiaris.

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